Mexican pulled pork

This undated photo provided by America's Test Kitchen in May 2018 shows Mexican pulled pork in Brookline, Mass. This recipe appears in “The Complete America's Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook 2001-2018.” (Carl Tremblay/America's Test Kitchen via AP)

Servings: 6

Start to finish: 2 hours and 30 minutes

We like serving carnitas spooned into tacos, but you can also use it as a filling for tamales, enchiladas, and burritos.


1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) boneless pork butt, fat cap trimmed to 4/5 inch thick, cut into 2-inch chunks

1 small onion, peeled and halved

2 bay leaves

1 teaspoon dried oregano

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Table salt and ground black pepper

2 cups water

2 tablespoons juice from 1 lime

1 medium orange, halved

Tortillas and Garnishes:

18 (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed

Lime wedges

Minced white or red onion

Fresh cilantro leaves

Thinly sliced radishes

Sour cream

Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 300 F. Combine the pork, onion, bay leaves, oregano, cumin, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, water, and lime juice in a large Dutch oven (the liquid should just barely cover the meat). Juice the orange into a medium bowl and remove any seeds (you should have about 1/3 cup juice). Add the juice and spent orange halves to the pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Cover the pot and transfer it to the oven; cook until the meat is soft and falls apart when prodded with a fork, about 2 hours, flipping the pieces of meat once during cooking.

Remove the pot from the oven and turn the oven to broil. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pork to a bowl; remove the orange halves, onion, and bay leaves from the cooking liquid and discard (do not skim the fat from the liquid). Place the pot over high heat (use caution, as the handles will be very hot) and simmer the liquid, stirring frequently, until thick and syrupy (a heatproof spatula should leave a wide trail when dragged through the glaze), 8 to 12 minutes. You should have about 1 cup reduced liquid.

Using two forks, pull each piece of pork in half. Fold in the reduced liquid; season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread the pork in an even layer on a wire rack set over a rimmed baking sheet or on a broiler pan (the meat should cover almost the entire surface of the rack or broiler pan). Place the baking sheet on the lower-middle oven rack and broil until the top of the meat is well browned (but not charred) and the edges are slightly crisp, 5 to 8 minutes. Using a wide metal spatula, flip the pieces of meat and continue to broil until the top is well browned and the edges are slightly crisp, 5 to 8 minutes longer. Serve immediately with the warm tortillas and garnishes.

To warm tortillas, place them on a plate, cover with a damp dish towel, and microwave for 60 to 90 seconds. Keep tortillas covered and serve immediately.

Nutrition information per serving: 339 calories; 127 calories from fat; 14 g fat (5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 147 mg cholesterol; 549 mg sodium; 3 g carbohydrate; 0 g fiber; 2 g sugar; 46 g protein.

For more recipes, cooking tips and ingredient and product reviews, visit . Find more recipes like Mexican Pulled Pork in “The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook 2001-2018 .”